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Mesoporous Inverse Opal TiO2 Film as Light Scattering Layer for Dye-Sensitized Solar Cell

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The light harvesting efficiency of dye-sensitized solar cells was enhanced by using a scattering layer. Such as sphere type TiO2, inverse photonic crystal TiO2, hollow spherical TiO2. Among these materials, the TiO2 with inverse photonic crystal (IPC) structure, synthesized by self-assembly using spherical templates, has attracted much attention due to their photonic crystal characteristics and light scattering effects. However, when applied in the DSSCs, the surface area of IPC is very low that caused insufficient adsorption amount of dye molecules. In the present work, a scattering layer with mesoporous inverse photonic crystal (MIPC) TiO2 film was fabricated by the sol–gel reactions with surfactant-assisted sol–gel method using poly(methyl methacrylate) as the template and titanium (IV) isopropoxide as the TiO2 precursor. After removing the PMMA and surfactant, a highly ordered macroporous structure with mesopores were successfully obtained. The surface area and total pore volume of the MIPC were 82 m2/g and 0.31 cm3/g, respectively, which is much larger than those of the IPC. The DSSCs with the scattering layer of MIPC film exhibited 18 and 10% higher photo-conversion efficiency than those of cells only with a nano-crystalline TiO2 film and with scattering layer of IPC film. From UV-visible spectra of dye solutions, the MIPC film showed a higher amount of absorbed dye molecules than those of the reference and IPC films. Accordingly, an increase in the photo-current density through abundant adsorption of the dye, coupled with inherent light scattering ability can improve overall photo-conversion efficiency.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 2012-01-01

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  • Journal for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (JNN) is an international and multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal with a wide-ranging coverage, consolidating research activities in all areas of nanoscience and nanotechnology into a single and unique reference source. JNN is the first cross-disciplinary journal to publish original full research articles, rapid communications of important new scientific and technological findings, timely state-of-the-art reviews with author's photo and short biography, and current research news encompassing the fundamental and applied research in all disciplines of science, engineering and medicine.
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